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Floral volatile composition of four species of Vaccinium

Forney, C.F., Javorek, S.K., Jordan, M.A., Vander Kloet, S.P. (2012). Floral volatile composition of four species of Vaccinium, 90(5), 365-371.


The floral volatile composition of four species of Vaccinium was profiled to asses the diversity of the floral chemistry within this genus. Flowers of Vaccinium angustifolium Aiton, Vaccinium varingiaefolium Miq., Vaccinium arboreum Marsh., and Vaccinium poasanum Donn. Sm. were sampled from three or more plants, and volatiles were collected and analyzed by gas chromatography-mass spectroscopy. A total of 45 volatile compounds were detected in the air (headspace) surrounding flowers including 40 from V. angustifolium, 34 for V. varingiaefolium, 37 for V. arboreum, and 17 for V. poasanum. Of the volatile compounds identified, 34 were terpenoids, 6 were benzoids and phenylpropanoids, 4 were aliphatics, and 1 was a miscellaneous cyclic compound. Terpenoids accounted for 98%, 80%, 76%, and 67% of the total volatiles for V. angustifolium, V. varingiaefolium, V. arboreum, and V. poasanum, respectively. The most abundant volatile compound emitted from the flowers of each species was a-pinene for V. angustifolium (23%) and V. arboreum (63%), methyl benzoate for V. varingiaefolium (18%), and ethyl benzene for V. poasanum (21%). Substantial variation was observed in the floral volatile composition of these four Vaccinium species, which may reflect their diverse ecological origins.

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